... because our camera died on the first half of the trip, and so, even though Jamie's first birthday is adequately documented, Sock Summit is, sadly, unphotographed by me. No big deal. Lots of people are taking Sock Summit pictures, but only I took a picture of Jamie recoiling in horror as the Fool offered him a small bite of carrot cake.
When my old newspaper used to send reporters out to cover something big and sprawling, such as the county fair, we used to have to turn in a short feature story on something (rabbit competition, fancy chickens, flea circus, 4H livestock auction ....) and then a "reporter's notebook," which was a short, pithy roundup of other fun things we stumbled across (chat with Optimists' Club about secret cheese curd batter recipe, most popular ice cream flavor by sales volume, names of prizewinning housecats....)
I have a short attention span tonight. Too many short row heels or something.
The Fool has it out for Cat Bordhi
I took a class Thursday with Cat Bordhi, in which she talked about a lot of the ideas in "New Pathways for Sock Knitters," which was really kind of mind-blowing. She showed some other assorted knitterly tricks too, which were not so much mind-blowing but really useful. Then, after lunch, she talked about how she learned to knit while walking. The Fool knits and walks, and honestly, in the past, I've thought it was a little weird.
But having a baby changes one's perspective on things, and now that I have less free time than before, I find myself having arguments with myself about whether I should spend that precious free time going to the gym (nurturing the physical body), or knitting something (nurturing the artistic soul.) As my artistic soul doesn't wear pants, I often pick an entertaining - ha! - step class over knitting - and then I feel a little cheated that I didn't get to knit much that day.
So I listened to her talk about knitting and walking, and this little voice said, "Hey, if you put on your shoes and went for a half-hour walk each night when the Fool got home from work, you could knit and get a little exercise, especially if you got good at walking fast." She made it look pretty easy,* and I mentioned to the Fool that I was going to take this up when I got home.
He was affronted.
"That's not fair! You make fun of me for knitting and walking, but if Cat Bordhi does it ... wait, I get it. You're getting even for the CDs, aren't you?"
See, I often buy CDs by various artists, and listen to them, and the Fool says something noncommital, like, "oh, that's nice." Then, two months later, he stumbles across the CD, pops it into the player, and I come home to find him listening to his new favorite music, which he proceeds to play for two days straight, talking the entire time about how much he loves it.
So yes, maybe it is getting a little bit even.
Speaking the speak of the knit-geeks
Overheard while walking up the sidewalk to Burgerville for lunch (love the Walla Walla onion rings) on the first day.
"We did the French heel, and the German heel and the Dutch heel, and after lunch, we're going to talk about the Welsh heel!"
Setting a world record
I'm never going to be the fastest human being or the tallest, and I haven't the patience to grow the longest fingernails, so when I heard I had a chance to help break the world record for simultaneous knitting, (video here), I signed right up. Me and 934 other people. I think the 236 Australian knitters are toast.
I knit a dishcloth and just before we started, I took it off the 7s I had started it on, and put it on a pair of the Fool's late grandmother's 8s. I like to think she enjoyed being part of the world record with me.
I'm a top down sock knitter. A couple years ago, I started a toe up sock, but I frogged it, because I didn't like it and it was making me nutty. But I have two skeins of yarn with uncertain yardage, and so I signed up for "Toe Up Socks for the Stubborn," taught by Deb Barnhill (who has eaten the same delicious fish and chips in Truro as we did a couple years back; she probably has eaten much more than we have as she lives there, but anyway....)
Now I am knitting a pair of toe up socks, and they are providing the kind of what's-happening-next thrill that a good sock ought to. Too cool.
(Deb also provided a ruling on a question the Fool and I have been debating as we realize we will have to clean up our language right skippy: Is "arse" a "bad word?"
I said yes, because it's too close to "ass," and if some parents (my mother) think "butt" is crude, then "arse" most definitely is. The Fool was hoping he could use it to internationalize his cursing. Deb, who is a parent, said if one of her kids said "arse," she would have to tell them not to use that word. Now we just have to work on making sure Jamie doesn't learn to say "dammit!" from me. )
The Fool and Jamie go to the zoo
Summary of their day: River otters? Good.
Sea otters? Good.
Fruit bats? Beautiful.
Bears? Not dogs. (Jamie is learning sign language. He's not learning it fast enough, because the only two animal signs he knows are "bird" and "dog." I suppose a bear looks more like a dog than a bird, so that's something.)
Orangutans? Not monkeys. (Me: wasn't that a degree of subtlety lost on a 1-year-old? Fool: They're not monkeys. They would be offended if I called them a monkey. Me: I don't think they'd know. Fool: People get offended if you call them monkeys. Me: I'm going to go knit a sock now.)
Monkeys? Humping. (Fool: What is it, every time I see monkeys, they're humping? Me: Are you sure? Fool: This little kid said, 'hey, they're wrestling,' and every adult in there started giggling. They were humping.)
*so while Cat was talking about knitting and walking, the Yarn Harlot poked her head in the room to make sure everything was going OK, and Cat challenged her to a knitting and walking race, but Stephanie never showed up again.